Do you feel the need…the need for speed?
Tickets are now on sale for the 2022 STIHL National Championship Air Races in Reno. The event is slated for September 14-18 at Stead Airport (KRTS).
“Reno” as the event is known in aviation circles, is known as “the world’s fastest motorsport” and is also part airshow. This year, military performances will include F-22s and F-18s, flown by some of the most skilled pilots in the world.
About the Reno Air Races
The Reno Air Races attract aviation enthusiasts from all over the world.
There are seven racing classes:
- Formula 1
- Jet Racing
- STOL Drag
Some of the racers can reach speeds of more than 500 mph.
Those who have been to the Reno Air Races stress that it is an immersive experience, especially if you have pit passes. There’s nothing like getting up close and personal with the racing machines and the people who support them, and then view the vintage aircraft on static display as part of the National Aviation Heritage Invitational (NAHI).
The vintage aircraft are selected for this public viewing because they are museum quality, says Ron Kaplan, deputy director of NAHI.
“Reno is the ideal venue for the Invitational because you can’t get much more historic than Stead Field,” he says. The airport was a training base for the Army Air Corps during World War II.
“This is the 22nd year we have done the National Aviation Heritage Invitational,” Kaplan adds. “The aircraft must be at least 45 years old and be restored to airworthy condition. These are flying museum pieces, some are one-of-a-kind. The judges spend three days judging the aircraft for authenticity and craftsmanship. In general, the aircraft that looks like it did when it came off the assembly line can earn a trophy.”
The winner gets their name added to the Neil A. Armstrong Aviation Heritage Trophy. The coveted, 6-foot-tall trophy resides at the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar Hazy Center in Virginia during the year.
The Reno races inspire many a young person to pursue aviation, and to assist with that, the Global Robot and Drone Deployment (GRADD)-Nevada Business Aviation Association (NVBAA) STEM Education Discovery Zone will be open for children to explore. The area features hands-on activities designed to inspire and empower kids to engage with science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, while encouraging them to pursue careers within the aviation and aerospace industry.
Among the planned activities are:
- Drone flying
- Flight simulators
- A 3D printing zone
- A hydraulic robotic arm
- STEM Arcade.